Reforestation. Environmental Education. Advocacy.
By Tom Garabedian, Managing Director
This past year was notable for Armenia Tree Project not simply because we celebrated our 20th anniversary through major events in Los Angeles, Boston, and Yerevan but because we continued to improve Armenia’s environment through community-based tree planting and environmental education. Improving Armenia’s environment is the essence of our mission. We are committed to making Armenia a better place to live.
We remain focused on this mission and have cultivated our resources (outstanding staff, nurseries, and education centers) so that we can deliver high-quality results.
We are at the forefront of a United Nations sponsored program to develop an Environmental Education Network. This program coordinates the work of 20 organizations working in education with a primary objective to develop an environmentally oriented citizenry. ATP was chosen to take a leadership role because of our record of accomplishment.
An overview of our accomplishments wouldn’t be complete without a few key statistics. During 2014, we planted 59,263 trees through our Community Tree Planting program and another 182,116 in our reforestation efforts. Plantings extended into Artsakh, including the distribution of 2,050 fruit trees to 220 Syrian Armenian families who were resettled in Kovsakan. The 2014 fruit harvest from our plantings was nearly 450,000 pounds. Our forestry work included the completion of the Sosé and Allen Memorial Forest in Stepanavan, which now has more than 60,000 trees covering 25 hectares. We also maintained more than 750,000 young growth trees planted in previous years.
All Armenians and our friends understand that 2015 is the 100th Centennial of the Armenian Genocide. We are planning an initiative that embraces the remembrance of our ancestors who perished and rejoices in the rebirth of the Armenian nation. We will remember the past by planting for the future. Details will be forthcoming.
We are also taking steps to establish a greater presence in southern Armenia through the development of a nursery and education center in Vayots Dzor. It will be a busy and exciting year for ATP, and we greatly appreciate your continued support.
Finally, I want to extend my thanks to the Executive Committee which afforded me the opportunity to lead this organization for the past four years. My retirement is looming, and our transition plan will ensure that ATP continues to produce excellent results for Armenia’s environment and people.
Click here to view the 2013 Directors Statement